Wishing for Rain


A typical rainy day gives me a great excuse to drink a cup of hot tea, listen to chill music, slow down and reflect.

So far, all this sunshine we are blessed with here in Colorado makes it quite hard for one to sit inside and do just that.  I'm finding it near impossible to slow down here. 

I never would have thought that one of the things I miss most about Oklahoma is a good rain storm.  We are departing from the "rainy season" here and I find myself wishing, hoping, for just a few drops to fall from the sky.  


Our New Home

Finally, the anticipated photos of our new digs...

We are pretty smitten with this little rental house.

The neighborhood is great; it's biking distance from Little Man Ice Cream and Highland Tap and Burger, Sunflower is right around the corner, and the neighbors are quite friendly.

The wood floors and odd quirks (we have a Harry Potter coat closet!) remind me of the homes I lived in college.  Penny loves the stairs to sneak up on people as they round the corner to the top.  And the attic fan puts me right to sleep.

Ah, and that backyard.  It's where we spend most of our time.  The hammock is up, and the massive tree that houses 4 squirrel's nests keeps Zia entertained for hours.  It gives a relaxing place to enjoy a glass of wine with friends and hopefully host a cookout before the summer winds down to an end.

For 11 months, it's all ours. 


Grow, Veggies, Grow!

The lovely family who we are renting their house for the next year allowed us to plant a few veggies in their garden before we moved in.  They (we?) have an automatic sprinkler system, so Ryan went over, planted, and then we didn't see our little plants again for 2 months. 

...until now!

They are growing so strong.  The cherry tomatoes (hiding just behind these big guys) are probably my favorite veggie ever: they are so cute and little, but also taste amazing.  I barely get the container back into the house before I've eaten them all.

And check out that ginormous pepper!  And out-of-control Basil plant!

We've toted this strawberry plant all over the place this year, but clearly some creature at the new house said "get outta here" (in its Italian accent) because that plant is totally demolished.  Or eaten.  Or something. 

Hooray for home grown veggies.


This One Time I Tried a Cleanse

My co-worker, who usually joins me for restaurant crawls and happy hour, asked if I wanted to do a cleanse with her this week.

First response: "no way"
But then she said it was only for 48 hours and she needed a buddy, so I reluctantly said "yes?".

Obviously doing this over the weekend was out; there wasn't a chance that we were going to waste our weekend having no fun (cleanse = no fun), so we decided to do it on Tuesday and Wednesday.

What did we get ourselves into?  

Breakfast was alright, the lunch smoothie was delicious, but I wish I could have 3 more, juiced kale wasn't too bad, and my snack of radishes and green beans was comical.  I tried to have a good attitude, really really hard, and kept saying "2 days, 2 days, 2 days".

And honestly, it wasn't the lack of delicious food I'm used to eating (and the morning coffee of course), I wasn't having cravings for french fries, it was how my body was starting to feel that made the cleanse so hard... I was tired and had an awful headache and was making poor decisions.  Dr. Oz said we could eat as many "snacks" as we wanted, but I went through my whole bunch of radishes, ate 4 celery sticks, and still felt pretty sluggish.

It was dinner time and I had a big ol' pot of stew cooking (per the strict menu) and I thought, this is going to be fabulous. I will eat this massive pot of stew and I'll be okay! I can do this!

After an hour of simmering, I took a quick taste, and it was horrible.  I even added things I wasn't suppose to add in a last ditch attempt to make it worth eating and nothing helped.

I grabbed a piece of bread (not on the list) and tried to eat the soup with it, but I just ate the bread instead.  Then put butter on it (definitely not on the list).  Then grabbed another piece of bread, and another.

The downfall.

I lasted 12 hours of a 48 hour cleanse.   


Into the Wild

“...so many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.” 

                                                                          Christopher McCandless, 'Into the Wild'


On the Bookshelf: recommended reads

Instant Love: How to Make Magic and Memories with Polaroids by Susannah Conway, Amanda Gilligan, Jenifer Altman - I'm a big fan of Ryan Marshall, author of the blog, Pacing the Panic Room. A couple months ago he posted a video he made for the project and book, Instant Love and I knew it was a book I wanted to dive into.  The photos looked amazing and to hear a bit more about Polaroid from 3 talented photographers was something I knew that would keep my attention.  It was a great little read and I actually learned a thing or two or twenty about photography!  I picked this book up on sale at Urban Outfitters.

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (and other concerns) by  Mindy Kaling - This book was recommended by Valerie and then I recommended it to my Book Club!  Kaling is one of the writers for The Office and also plays a character in the show.  In the book she talks about her time working for The Office, being a female writer in a predominately male field, and her real life friends and actors, among many other things.  She's witty.  So witty, and a good story teller with quite the interesting life story of trying to make it big in New York City. 

Divergent by Veronica Roth - Oh, young adult trilogies.  I love you so.  This first book of the trilogy was a recommendation from  friend's mom (who loves YA as much as I do!). The book felt like a mix between The Host and of course, Hunger Games.  It takes place in a dystopian world with 5 factions that you can belong - Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent).  The book follows a young girl, Beatrice, as she struggles with following her families values and setting off on her own into adulthood, following her heart as she chooses a new faction. There might be a little love story in there too.. for good measure.  Go read it!


I've Moved and This is All I have to Show For...

4 little photos.
  • The amount of natural light in the new house is glorious.  I've opened every window each morning, just to take it in.  Our old apartment had 6 windows.. the new house has 13.
  • We rented a Uhaul.  First time ever too.  And Ryan wore his cowboy hat all day while we hauled boxes from point A to B. After 4 hours of moving, he still had a smile on his face.
  • I took off work yesterday to finish unpacking.  My goal: the bedroom closet and Zia was such a good helper.  Contrary to her apathetic demeanor, we finished.
  • My favorite nook so far: Zissou and a leafy house plant.

Instagram: @my_simple_story


Pack it Up

We're moving... again...

It's becoming a yearly tradition for me, dating back to 2003.  I've moved every. single. year (minus a little longer stint in an apartment in Oklahoma City). 

This time, we're moving a little closer to Denver and we couldn't be happier!  Remember that group we ride bikes with every Friday?  Well, now we don't have to drive our bikes to the meeting spot, we can cruise down the alley behind our (new) house and be ready to cruise.

Zia will have a backyard.
We will have a backyard.

It's going to be great!


Book Club in the Park

During the summertime, City Park hosts "Jazz in the Park" where everyone comes out to enjoy music and food and fun.

This Sunday we took our monthly book club to the park and had such a great time together.  Everyone brought salads to share and I made a batch of peanut butter banana bites that seemed to be a big hit. 

 Right now we are reading The Alchemist and last month we discussed my book club pick, Is Everybody Hanging Out Without Me?.  Always enjoy chatting with these ladies.

Ah, and I stuffed myself silly.  
Definitely the end to a great weekend! 


Lakeside Times

Two whole years ago, Ryan and I made a trip to Denver to visit friends and go to a concert.  And while we were in town, we met a bunch of new faces (including Beth!) at Lakeside Amusement Park, an older amusement park packed full of charm. 

So I was a little nostalgic this past Saturday, when that same group of people got together again, but this time I actually know them!  And I also knew what I was getting into with the Wild Chipmunk, picture no seat belt, switchbacks, and thoughts of possibly falling off the track. 

We rode just about every ride in the park.  Always a good time at Lakeside!


Not Quite A Yogi


I really enjoy yoga.
And thus far, I've only taken 10 or so classes, so I'm still very much learning.

But there was a Groupon last month for spin and yoga classes at a studio called Breathe. And so far my friend and I have only taken spin classes (which really kick your butt!).  So we decided to go to our first yoga class last night.

We both tried Yin Yoga for the first time, which is a type of yoga where you hold the positions for a longer amount of time than Flow Yoga, which is a little more common. And we really lucked out because we were the only ones in class.  
It was really tough!  But so rewarding.

Our instructor was great; she explained each position, why inverts are so important internally and externally, she laughed with us when we absolutely couldn't hold positions for as long as she wanted to, we were definitely in this together.

She said every time you go to your yoga mat, it takes courage.  Courage to work with a new instructor, courage to do what is asked, courage to push through the (sometimes) pain, and courage to find an inner strength.  And it really spoke to me. 


Afterward I felt strong,
And accomplished.
And happy.

I'm not quite a yogi, at all, but I'm sure getting there!